Lots of men are carrying round a dirty little secret that affects them way more than they might think and they can fix easily with a weekly martial arts class.
Yup, they don’t know how to fight…
Some people haven’t had a fight since they were kids, that’s normal and in a lot of ways it’s a good thing. Others were the only child and they didn’t have to punch or get punched and some were brought up by single mums and had that violent side driven out.
It shows you developed other skills and if you can genuinely handle a confrontation another way then great. That’s the best way.
Do You Shy Away From Confrontation?
But do you really handle it? Or do you give in too much? If you give in to everything and don’t stand your ground then you’re missing a life skill. It will play on your mind more than you think and it will cause you to shy away from confrontation that you need to have.
That’s OK, you can fix it.
Don’t be an angry thug, there’s a difference
Now the ones that really do like a weekend war after a few beers, they’re just dicks. Most of them are actually deeply insecure and unhappy with their lives so they need to prove themselves on the street against a stranger that shouldn’t matter.
Never be that guy, but I’m a firm believer that every man should learn how to fight. The reason might surprise you.
It has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that a rogue motorcycle gang might steal your woman, although it is true that a woman will feel safer and more into a man that can protect her.
It really isn’t that you might have to take down a home invader and protect your family without getting to the gun they’ll probably use to blow your head off.
No, it is none of those things.
It’s all about the way you handle a confrontation. Knowing how to fight will mean you really don’t have to. In fact you’ll have less arguments of any kind because you will deal with it the right way, quickly and instinctively.
Krav Maga might be the best martial art for you
It’s up to you which art you choose.
What’s the quickest martial art to master? A lot of people like Krav Maga and there’s something to be said for it. MMA mania has kicked in and the UFC is massively popular, but it’s a sporting contest between two people.
Krav Maga classes teach lethal techniques, if you’re into that.
Now you should really get to a class, because you need the repetition and an instructor will help you get a handle on the techniques and the muscle memory. But if you want to start right now, this course comes highly recommended on Amazon.
This Israeli defence system isn’t really a martial art as such, it’s a bunch of ways to fuck people up in the shortest possible time and defend yourself in a life or death situation.
Because more or less every technique has serious intent behind it, though, you find a lot of Krav Maga classes are basically non contact.
Get a great class and that’s not the case, in which case it kicks ass. Let’s face it, if you could do even 1% of this stuff then you’ll walk a little taller down the darkest alley.
Even if it is non or limited contact, it can still do the job in the end. But I don’t think it’s the quickest way to achieve this particular goal.
Muay Thai is better for learning to stand up and fight
Personally, I’d go for Muay Thai or plain old boxing. Most fights are basically boxing matches, bad ones, drunk ones.
If you can slip one punch and land a good one then that’s more or less it nine times out of 10. With boxing you are going to get punched, too, it’s going to happen. Taking the hits is a valuable part of this process.
Why? Because you learn to stand up to it. Getting smacked upside the head isn’t the end of the world.
You live, you take more and, in the end, you come back with your own. You also learn not to flinch, it looks ridiculous and you feel stupid, and that is where the magic lies.
You see most confrontations don’t end in physical confrontation. It’s all about the build-up, the staredown and the intricate verbal dance that leads right to the edge of things getting nasty. It can be with a stranger in the street, a business associate and it can even be with your girlfriend.
I’m not ever saying you should get into a screaming match with your girl, by the way, if you do then you’ve already lost control of that particular situation. If it gets physical, you two need to go your separate ways.
Verbal arguments work just like a fight
But even with an argument that will never, ever get physical, if you look closely then it’s all the same shit going on. People puff themselves up, raise their voice and try to intimidate and plain bully their way through to victory.
People back down because there’s a fear of the consequences. Those consequences never come, but they are always implied through subtle body language and outward aggression.
If you always shy away from a fight, because you know you can’t, then these cues alone will send your body and your brain into the usual pattern.
You’ll go into flight mode, you’ll give in and you’ll lose an argument with a belligerent grandma.
You’ll be a doormat.
The logical end game of that is that your own children will walk all over you, your girlfriend will, everybody will.
It sounds ridiculous, until you really apply critical thinking. Learning how to fight will prepare you for literally every type of conflict and it will teach you how to handle confrontation.
It helps make you more assertive. You don’t need to square up to your wife, but training to fight is also training to confront, to not run, to not shy away, to deal with it.
You get better day by day
Through practice and repetition you will stop giving away those little signs that an aggressor is looking for. You’ll stop giving off those signs of subtle submission.
These are primal, deeply ingrained signals that we might not even know about. But if you’re used to confrontation because you train for it once or twice a week, you’ll naturally cut that shit out.
Put it into a potentially violent situation and you’ll see all the same things. The guy in the street is looking for the easy victim. They’re looking for the ones that look at the floor, that shrink from their bullshit.
If you’re trained and ready, you just won’t. You’ll immediately pose a challenge. That can be enough to make them think twice.
Give them all the signs that you’re easy meat and they’re more likely to punch you, because there are no consequences for them.
It puts you in a position of strength
A long time ago I trained in Kickboxing and Tae Kwan Do, but that was before my life crisis and a business failure stripped away my sense of self. So when I met my BPD ex, I wasn’t coming from a position of strength and that bitch took pleasure in smashing me.
I let her. I didn’t fight back until it was way too late. When I started to remember who I was she was already so used to steamrollering me that there was no way to get any sense of equality there. I had to walk away. it had gone too far.
Truth be told I don’t think Superman could have saved that one, but I didn’t give it my best until I went back to fight school and changed a lot of other things.
Along with the gym, this was the physical commitment I made to picking myself up off the deck. It’s a powerful motivation, it’s a mindset change and it can do wonders on its own.
MMA and Muay Thai toughen you up fast
This time I went for MMA and Muay Thai. It was brutal and I did it deliberately. I did get hit, repeatedly, and the first times I felt myself shying away. I was weak, mentally.
I needed to toughen up, so I did. Within weeks I felt the old me coming back, because I got punched in the face and it didn’t feel that bad. I got choked, I got bruised and I started to fight back. I re-learned the simple fact that if I didn’t defend myself I was going to get smashed, literally and brutally.
I learned to stand up strong and confront people again.
Fight training helps your confidence
It paid off in so many ways. A client tried to rip me off, I ripped him a new one and I got paid.
I felt myself walking taller in the street. I felt my own friends giving me that little bit more respect and I actually had less confrontations.
That’s because I showed up different. I wasn’t afraid and that showed in my posture, my micro-expressions and you could hear it in my voice.
It made me more assertive, not as an act, or a fake it till you make it thing.
This is just one aspect of real inner game. It was core confidence that arose from the fact I could deal with the implied danger if it came my way. Suddenly, it doesn’t, you lose the air of an easy mark and the jackals leave you alone.
Then it’s up to you to keep your good character, be the calm one that doesn’t react. Keep your cool in the face of someone trying to push your buttons and don’t become the dickhead getting in people’s face. Be the sheepdog, not the wolf.
Be the person you are right now, with the added confidence that comes with the knowledge that you can deal with whatever comes your way. The other person will feel it, they’ll respect it and more often than not they will slowly back away.
So learn to fight, really fight, and there’s a good chance you’ll never have to.